It’s safe to say that this holiday season will be quite different from most celebrated in the past few decades. Millions of people are still under lockdown/other restrictions, and many don’t feel confident congregating in large groups. Still, we should not let this pandemic put a damper on our holidays, and there are plenty of solutions available to get the most out of these weeks without violating restrictions. Technology is a big help, and augmented reality (AR) in particular holds a lot of potentials. So, shall we see how you can use it to make your holidays brighter?

1. Create a Unique Christmas Card

Making custom Christmas cards is a great way to show care and love towards your workers. Photo and video greetings are popular for cards nowadays, but you can kick it up a notch with an AR application. For example, you can create a simple mobile app that will access users’ cameras and visualize the greeting in the spot that the camera pointed to, or you can even build a web application that can be accessed through a browser.

Using AR technology for such purposes is still quite novel, so you will be sure to impress your staff, giving them a new and unique experience in their lives. You can even target this card towards your clients and showcase your tech acumen. To make such an app, you can apply existing development knowledge or learn the ins and outs. For most, it will probably be easier to just use AR app development services to handle the heavy lifting for you.

2. Travel Remotely

While it may not be possible for you to jump on a flight and enjoy a vacation getaway at the moment, you can still travel remotely with AR. All it takes is a smartphone with a working camera and a special app installed, and you can access breathtaking visuals of exotic and exciting locations all over the world. While virtual tours and walkthroughs are already available in video and point-and-click format, AR apps provide realistic 3D models that you can project on any surface.

For example, the Expeditions app from Google lets users view and interact with thousands of locations and 3D models. Though it is primarily used for education, it also features numerous cultural landmarks and popular spots that can be explored. If you have a specific city in mind that you would like to explore from above, you can also try the Flyover feature in iOS Maps, which lets you take giant steps around a city by making small steps in real life.

3. Do Some Immersive Shopping

Christmas shopping is an age-old tradition observed by billions of people. However, the shopping experience usually involves hundreds of shoppers crowding in stores, spending extended periods in close contact. Obviously, this isn’t ideal in the current time, but there is always online shopping. Major retailers are constantly working on improving the online experience, and many of them have turned to AR.

Outlets like Ikea, Nike, Target, and numerous others have created AR apps or experiences that add immersion and value to shopping. The immersive features in the apps often involve seeing the products visualized in 3D or testing how they would look on you or in your home. You can see whether your favorite stores offer anything similar, and perhaps you will enjoy the virtual experience.

4. Learn Something New

During the holidays, you could spend your days feasting on leftovers and kicking back with a favorite TV show, but you could also allocate some free time to learn something new – pick up some skills and knowledge. The visualization features of augmented reality make learning fun, as you no longer need to look at textbooks or get distracted switching from theory to practice. These apps let you get information and try it out on one screen and app.

As an example, you can use the Music Everywhere app to play the piano or Exoplanet to learn about the stars around us. Nowadays, users have hundreds of immersive apps to choose from in various fields and industries.

5. Play AR Games

If you just want to relax and have fun, there are plenty of AR games to choose from. On one hand, there are popular games like Pokemon Go! and Wizards Unite which require you to walk around your local area, but physical activity is not mandatory. Some games like Angry Birds: Isle of Pigs, Zombie Gunship, and Temple Treasure Hunt can be enjoyed in the comfort of your own home. You can also grab a friend and play a multiplayer game, such as Father.IO and The Machines. The Android and iOS app stores have a wide variety of games in different genres to choose from.

Make the Most of Your Holidays

Even if you have never tried AR before, you will probably agree that the cases of its use we listed are impressive. And yet, they just barely scratch the surface of what can be accomplished with the technology. Each year, more and more people are seeing it as less of a fad and more like something that can improve their business.

We recommend trying it out when you have free time on your days off, and perhaps you will think of some ways it could benefit your business in 2022. Hopefully, this post gave you some insights and presented some ways to kill time or be productive. Happy holidays!

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Mikhail Shcherbatko
Mikhail Shcherbatko
Mikhail Shcherbatko is a creative writer, translator, movie buff, and fantasy book fan. Writing guest posts for Program-Ace, he strives to bring useful insights about the augmented reality market to the masses.

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